tv Beyond the Headlines ABC February 20, 2011 10:00am-10:30am PST
opportunities and challenges facing our local african community. but first, before we begin, campaign for change. on january 20th, 2009 he changed history. barack obama took the oath as the 44th president of the united states breaking a 220-year old mold in which only white men had the office. in his address he boldly challenged americans to remake america. t.j. winnick filed this report on inauguration day. >> it was quite simply history. >> i barack obama do solemnly swear that i will execute the office.... >> john roberts may not have reis a cited it word for word. he could not trip up barack
obama after getting a thumbs up from daughter sasha addressed the nation and world as the first african-american president of the united states. >> today i say to you the challenges we face are real. they are serious and they are many. they will not be met easily or in a short span of time but know this, america, they will be met. >> an estimated million people that viewed it he offered a new beginning. >> to the muslim world, we want a new way forward. >> and knew era of responsibility? >> recognition on the part of every american that we have duties to ourselves our nation and the world. duties that we do not accept but seize gladly. >> ted kennedy battling brain cancer had to be rushed to the hospital after apparently suffering from convulsions.
>> i would be lying to you if i did not say that right now a part of me is with him. >> after that, it was a return to the business at hand after they greeted thousands of onlookers gathered along the parade route. >> our distinguished. >> london breed and chris chat mon, joseph bryant, we also have a lieutenant daniel. we are celebrating black history month and president obama has issued a proclamation that extraordinary progress has been
won by the tears and toils of our predecessor but barriers still remain. with the election, it erased the last racial barrier but what is it having on average americans? >> i think the momentum of the movement was wonderful and inspiring to the people, especially african-americans but now, the fanfare and things have changed and reality has set in. they are inspired in different ways but they are feeling a lot of hopelessness in their communities when they are still dealing with issues of violence and still dealing with issues in their schools and not being educated properly. yes, it's had a great impact but there is work that needs to be done on the home front in order to deal with that. >> and when london talks some of those issues in terms of education, chris, what do you
see as opportunities and challenges? >> there are opportunities. it's an opportunity for us to really engage our community. i feel it's an opportunity, an opportunity to support unified school district that has is looking to provide the needs of children, not just within the school or a classroom but engaging the community around the needs of our children. as far as needs or struggles, i think the biggest is the state allocation of money to support public education which now is what we used to spend in 1999, 2000, we're spending in 2011, the same ada about ten years ago and that a big concern. >> so if the schools don't have the money to educate the ways you feel is necessary, then other community groups have to step in and do some of that.
dr. bryant i know your church is engaged in? >> absolutely. we believe there is a responsibility that we have not only to be in the community but to be engaged with the community. so a lot of the things that our families need and children need we believe we have a responsibility to provide a holistic reality that embodies your spiritual needs but practically needs, as well. our church is committed to make those strides and teach children the values of education and provide outlets and grow in holistic ways and come in there to have a say but have their lives change. >> you can look at things people say with barack obama's election the racial divide was going to be here, that discrimination was going to end. that, of course, is not realistic but what responsibility do we as a community have to lift ourselves
up? >> i think the president did a wonderful job in not only inspiring people but also he consistently reminded us that he would need us to engage ourselves. it was more than him getting into office but he would need us to engage in community service and to better ourselves and to improve our wherewithal by going to school and pursuing opportunities. i think the responsibilities, that is something we can proudly say we want to support his efforts and his voice and beliefs. we're going to get involved. he was a grassroots type of candidate. now, we got your back because we are not just looking at you on the stage or platform but we're going to do our part to make the changes in our world that you are making in the whole world. >> we're going to come back and talk with the lieutenant talking about the prisoner justice
system and the impact you are having, as well. not just on arresting youth but programs you are supporting the youth, as well. we're going to take a quick break and we'll continue our conversation about challenges and opportunities in the black community.wswswswswswswswswswswx this is a strawberry pop-tart. and this is the warm fresh baked taste... of a strawberry toaster strudel. see the difference? pillsbury toaster strudel.
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discussion with four outstanding leaders in our black community. before we begin, president obama's former minister jeremiah wright was in the bay recently. he talked about the local african-american community. shear lisa amin gulezian. >> the african-american community in the bay area has made national news for situations that has not always been in the best of light. >> on this new year's day the people of the baptististers mins union want to. >> for some, their spirit is also broken. especially after crimes like the gang rape of 15-year-old girl in
richmond and the shooting death of an unarmed barber in oakland by police. >> we are a hurting community, but there has to be a change or a strategy of survival set up in our churches. >> the movement initiative encourages economic development and help and wellness and it will be the church's job to put a positive step out. >> they are trying to figure out a schedule so financial aid can begin as soon as possible. >> richmond city councilman says they need this initiative to work. rich monday monld's ranked high in the country in 2009. >> for us to make change we need to believe in change. so it's our responsibility to put those in focus. >> movement organizers hope having the support of reverend
wright will help and obama's former pastor to speak today. he started a plan in chicago but wright refused to speak with the media. >> so pastor bryant you are well aware of this initiative. what is going to make it more than just talking the talk. we have lots of programs, lots of reforms. >> i think at this juncture we need the community to reestablish itself as a viabity. for the past few decades, the committee has been lethargic and not engaged with making differences. the movement of civil rights came out of the churches. dr. king and those other pastors were very specific and educational about ensuring the life of the people were being addressed. i think pastors and church leaders have to be pro-active,
have to be involved on community levels with various political things that are going on and be a voice, a strong voice from the pulpit but in a very pro-active and intelligent way because the plan is fantastic because of economic development and education. those are things we need so desperately in our community. >> where does the criminal justice system come in. you are with the oakland police department and the chief batts has tried innovative reforms there? >> the oakland police department's stance is pretty much this. we believe in coalition with the faith based communities and skoomgs and afterschool programs to address really address the ce issues what is going on. violence is a huge issue. the majority of the shootings and the victims' of the
shootings are african-american youth. we knowsome at some point the children were at risk, identified by parents or neighborhoods or in the schools. that is where we're trying to focus our efforts now so we can prevent and toemp them from being a part of the criminal justice system. >> and the detainees in the oakland detention system, are the most african-american males. >> the numbers are very alarming. as part of that, we have the otay program that we strongly support. african-american males that are identified in the community, faith-based community, teachers, parents of being at risk. we actually assign an officer to mentor them, not just to play basketball or football but to
help them with everyday quality of life things. this is how you cut your hair. personal hygiene, things we take for grand that kids don't get in the home we think they should get in the home. they see, hey this is officer is a regular person and it builds that us from and gets that relationship going that we like to see. it bridges the gap between the police department and the rest of the community. >> we want to about young african-american males and we'll talk more with you. we have to take another quick break and we'll be right back to continue the conversation about challenges and opportunities in the black community.
welcome back. i'm carolyn tyler with a special edition of beyond the headlines. we've been talking about important issues affecting the black community. a stunning report from august says america's education system is failing boys in the community. fewer than half graduate from school of african-american males. 78% of the white counterparts graduated from high school. cecilia vega takes a closer look at the report and filed this report back in august about why so bay area educators are not surprised by the results.
>> there is a crisis in the classroom. >> there is a crisis in oakland schools, the graduation wait for black students is just shy of 50%. for other races it's 70%. why black students in this largely african-american city is not graduating is one of the problems principals are solutio. they now have a goal. >> we're saying in the next four years, we have to double the graduation rate for african-american males. >> a new study found that oakland is hardly alone. schools around the country are failing black males. nationally the graduation rate for black high school boys is just 47%. in california the numbers are only slightly better. a 54% graduation rate for african-american males. 78% for whites. males in new york and philadelphia fared among the worst with 28% graduation rate.
they did the best in new jersey, they say money and historic lack of it is to blame. >> inequality of the distribution of educational resources in this country. >> they say black males are prnd more and given less opportunities in class than their white peers. they say it's possible to make a lasting change. the principal's mother that only had a fifth grade education, she is living proof that teachers make a difference. >> it the opportunity. >> this one got us talking. chris is what program in oakland to address this issue, but it's not just of an oakland problem? >>, no it's nationwide.
what we're experiencing in oakland we're experiencing in parts of l.a., in d.c.. in new orleans. new york, really every urban environment. i think what has been unique to oakland, some of the leadership of our superintendent and school board actually is addressing the needs of black boys given the pipeline is not three going to college, the pipeline is they are going to prison. we want to readjust the system so we ensure that black males exceed, graduate like every other group in the city of oakland. >> it's early on but are we making a dent. i would want to ask someone like london what else she sees the reason for the problem for the challenges. >> i would say that part of it is positive role models.
african-american men that are in the community consistently. one of the issues we face when we bring in instructors to work with our boys was an african-american man, they have a lot of struggles because they don't want to take direction from an african-american man. for some reason, if it has something to do with resentment or not being used to it or not having their fathers in their home but they have a lot of personal issues. those issues need to be addressed. we need to look at the group cause and we understand, all of us have a small responsibility to somehow give back and work with these people in a way that we nurture them and we respect them and show them a whole new world, something as simple as teaching them about hygiene. we take for granted they are learning these things but think are not learning these things from a man. they have their mothers or to playh used to play a role. i remember when i was growing up it took the place for me but it
seems like it's old school. >> exactly, that is a school that should never get old. that should be a reality as part of the faith community. we have a voice to men where we mentor our young men consistently. we take boys out to gangs and bowling, we take them fishing and engage with them academically and stop by the schools. so the resentment that london talked about is very real. young people have these issues and this tension because it's unfamiliar to know it's different and still angry. but it has to be consistently done. >> yes, definitely. >> the other thing, one of our programs, boys in particular, they take ballroo ballroom dancd etiquette classes, we don't want them out there doing illegal
activities so that the incentive. they feel empowered and they feel responsible. i got to go do this ballroom dancing thing -- whereas my job, i have to do this. somebody is paying you to do ballroom dance something and when they perform for the friends and family in the community there is a whole sense of plied and younger kids looked at them and was thinking i want gen next generation of kids that are inspiring the smaller generation to say, i want to be like that. we're missing a whole generation through violence and this prison system. we have to focus on prevention. we have to get in there now. we have to stay consistent. we can't go away. >> quickly, i was asking you about success rates. >> it's about engaging community. seven core goals.
eliminating the achievement gap, cutting incarceration rates in half and increasing the attendance and, kind of identifying practice within oakland, looking at research nationally and putting forward recommendations that will be embedded in the next strategic plan but simultaneously we too have initiatives going on. one is training, found out in jersey, baltimore and long beach and fresno that you put in school day a development training, ideally this would be happening at gnome but not happening enough. attendance and discipline is cut it's pretty much eliminated. at skyline high school we actually, ninth grade boys that are going through training with credit in the community.
it's a system that is pushing our boys out. we can inoculate them with the compassion to navigate through that system, things will change. so right now we're looking at putting in place programs in the school day but trying to change the conditions through learning and creating stronger school culture and what have you. >> all right. we'll be looking to see how that progresses. we're going to take another quick break. we'll right back to continue our conversation about challenges and opportunities in our africacacacacacacacacacacacacaca
tend to have healthier body weights. multigrain cheerios has five whole grains and 110 lightly sweetened calories. more grains. less you! multigrain cheerios. welcome back. we are running out of time. i hate to say that. we've had such a good discussion here. i'm going to ask the lieutenant what she thinks the role of the police department can be in the black community. >> law enforcement really has evolved strictly from law enforcement to public safety so it encompasses many areas. it does bring in the schools and brings in partnerships within the community and also the faith-based community. there is so many core issues again that need to be addressed. we are here to provide whatever assistance we can, whether it's
from the enforcement angle or even as people. we are parents with children in the community. >> and you talked about forming alliances with each other, thank you for being here and willing to do that. we are out of time. i want to say a special thanks to our guests today. that is it fors itl edition of beyond the headlines. information about the show is available on our website at www.abc7.com. ♪ ♪ [ female announcer ] why settle for plain bread when you can have pillsbury grands! flaky layers biscuits? the warm, light delicate layers are like nothing else. add a layer of excitement to your next meal. ♪
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